Wikileaks Vindicates Cuba “Embargo”

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Lately, anti-“embargo” sentiment has even “crossed the aisle.” Pro-embargo Cuban-exile lobbyists managed to get Bill Buckley and Gore Vidal, Chris Dodd and Larry Craig, Pat Buchanan and Antonio Villaraigosa, George Will and Noam Chomsky, The Brookings Institution and the Cato Institute, the Wall Street Journal and The Nation, The U.S. Communist Party and the U.S. Chamber of Commerce–all on the same side of an issue. All of the above have come out publicly against the so-called Cuban embargo. All blame it on the “politically-powerful” and “well-heeled” Cuban-American lobby.

Not that Castroite sponging started recently. In fact, per capita-wise, for years Cuba has qualified as the world’s biggest debtor nation with a foreign debt of close to $50 billion, a credit rating nudging Somalia’s, and an uninterrupted record of defaults. In 2008, one of the world’s most respected economic forecasting firms, the London- based Economist Intelligence Unit, ranked Cuba as virtually the world’s worst country in terms of business. Only Iran and Angola ranked lower. This firm predicted that Cuba’s abysmal business climate would remain that way for the next five years, at the very least.

Standard & Poors refuses even to rate Cuba, regarding the economic figures released by the regime as utterly bogus.

In 1986 Cuba defaulted on most of its foreign debt to Europe. Three years ago, France’s version of the U.S. government’s Export-Import bank, (named COFACE) cut off Cuba’s credit line. Mexico’s Bancomex quickly followed suit. This came about because the Castro regime stuck it to French taxpayers for $175 million and to Mexican taxpayers for $365 million. Bancomex was forced to impound Cuban assets in three different countries in an attempt to recoup its losses.

Last year, the Castro regime suddenly froze $1 billion held in Cuban banks by foreign (mostly Spanish) businessmen. “Cuban banks informed depositors that they had no foreign exchange to back up the convertible peso in which many were doing business,” explained Reuters Havana Bureau.

However valuable to American taxpayers today, U.S. sanctions against Castro’s Stalinist regime were not originally enacted due to their abysmal credit rating. In July 1960, Castro’s KGB-trained security forces stormed into 5,911 U.S. owned businesses in Cuba and stole them all at Soviet gunpoint – $2 billion were heisted from outraged U.S. businessmen and stockholders. Rubbing his hands in triumphant glee, Castro boasted at maximum volume to the entire world that he was freeing Cuba from “Yankee economic slavery” (Che Guevara’s term, actually) and that “he would never repay a penny.”

This is the only promise Fidel Castro has ever kept in his life.

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  • IcelandMarc

    In 1983, Fidel Castro wrote a book calling on all of the world's debtor nations to default on international loans and credit. The Castro regime has kept it's word and no one should be surprised by this situation. The left's continued infatuation with all things Castro blinds them to these actions. Castro is and always will be a thief, and a petty one at that…

  • Steve Marquardt

    Nothing new here in Cuban financial practices, going all the back to Che: "Guevara … As a guerrilla fighter, he had suggested financing the revolution by robbing banks. Now as head of the country’s leading financial institution, he was beginning to build the revolutionary economy on two basic principles – print money and refuse to pay your debts." (p. 294 of the biography "Fidel Castro," by Robert E. Quirk (W.W. Norton, 1993)

  • cuidate

    The point that is completely missed here is that it should not be a political decision about who can sell what to whom. Free enterprise is not free if one government can dictate to its private businesses who they can or cannot sell harmless products to. If Cuba's credit is bad then it's up to private business to make the decision to sell to them or not. The idea that requiring cash up front is not a crippling factor in doing business is foolish. Cuba had been mandated to pay for the goods sold to them, before they ever left a US port. The US has frozen Cuban money in US banks on more than a few occasions so that's a risk. As Jimmy Carter says, the embargo is a stupid law that serves no one except the Castro Regime. It most especially does injury to the very people it is ostensibly intended to help, the average Cuban citizen.

  • Paul Maurer

    Thank you Sir and allow me to repeat just for the other two commentators:

    – please research USAid and other taxpayer’s money spent on the ‘democratisation of Cuba and follow the money – thieves galore.

  • Sandokan

    What the Castro’s regime really wants are loans and lines of credit guaranteed by the U.S. Treasury Department, since it doesn’t have hard currency to pay the interests on the lines of credit for the importation of merchandise. These credits and loans will not be paid and the US taxpayers will be the ones to pick up the debt, as it happens at the present time with the taxpayers of Spain, Argentina, Canada, Venezuela and other countries. The regime owns $31 billion to the Paris Club (EU countries), $22 billion to the countries of the old socialist campus, $15 billion to Venezuela and another $12 billion to other countries, for a staggering debt of $80 billion.

    US sales to Cuba in 2008 reach $801 million. Import totaled $14.25 billion. The United States government’s embargo has had little effect on the Cuban economy, since this only represents 5.62% of the regime commerce with the rest of the world. Without the embargo the debt with the US could be similar to the debt of 31 billion with the EU countries.